Drinking too much water is known as overhydration and it can be just as damaging to your body as being dehydrated. While you should always aim to drink plenty of this natural fluid each day, getting carried away with this ‘healthy’ habit can result in physical side effects. Being overhydrated can leave you feeling out of sorts – but what are the most common signs of being overhydrated?
How to know if you’re drinking too much water
Staying hydrated is essential to keep your energy levels up while fuelling natural bodily functions.
While maintaining a healthy lifestyle through water intake may seem easy, there is a fine line between taking your quest for hydration too far.
Drinking too much water can cause physical side effects which indicate issues within your body affecting everything from your kidneys to your heart.
Tracking your daily water intake is one way to assess whether you have healthy water habits, but these common symptoms are also a tell-tale sign of too many trips to the kitchen tap.
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Your urine is colourless
While we all know that deep yellow urine is a sign of dehydration, clear urine could be a sign of excessive water intake.
Clear urine may appear healthy but medical website Healthline says that we should be aiming for a pale-yellow hue when we go to the toilet.
Clear urine could be a cause for concern if you are noticing it frequently.
If you notice clear urine for consecutive days, try reducing your water intake and see if you notice a change.
Headaches and nausea
A lingering headache could be a sign of low sodium levels which can be caused by excessive water intake.
If the body’s salt levels reduce it can cause cells to swell which can cause brain cells to press against the skull, says WebMD.
Increased pressure will leave you with a throbbing headache and feelings of nausea.
Shaky and weak muscles
Diluted blood sodium levels can also cause shakiness or pain in the arms and legs as a result of decreased electrolytes from over-hydration.
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If your sleep pattern is solid and you’re not obviously over-exerting yourself day-to-day, you could be experiencing an electrolyte imbalance.
This is caused by drinking too much water and can quickly leave you feeling low on energy, in a state of drowsiness or experiencing what feels like constant fatigue.
Confusion or disorientation
In extreme cases of overhydration, the body can lower the sodium levels in your blood and cause dangerous swelling on the brain.
Confusion, seizures or loss of consciousness require immediate medical attention so keep an eye on your water intake to avoid experiencing these concerning symptoms.
You’re drinking water when you’re not thirsty
Chugging water when you don’t feel thirsty makes it impossible to know if your body is craving fluids and can quickly lead you to drink far more water than you actually need.
While you should always increase your water intake when exercising or engaging in strenuous activity, relying on your natural thirst is the safest way to guide your water intake.
Swollen hands, feet or lips
Swelling in any of these areas can indicate an electrolyte imbalance from too much water.
Cells in the tissue of the face can look and feel puffy if you’re drinking excessive fluids.
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